Pantech Link Review
Mostly finding its niche predominantly in the text messaging class of phones, Pantech is easily becoming more relevant and well-known with each handset they push out. We've seen them experiment in various form factors such as the multi-sliding Pantech Matrix all the way to the side-opening clam-shell Pantech Impact. In their latest offering with the Pantech Link P7040, they've reverted back to the QWERTY slate form factor that was last seen on the Pantech Slate – a device that was humble to its roots, but offered plenty of functionality. Naturally there is a pattern we see with this handset as it attempts to link the gap between those basic users who are hesitant on jumping up to a full featured smartphone.
The package contains:
• Pantech Link
• User Guide
• Quick Start Guide
So here we are again seeing another portrait QWERTY handset in the Pantech Link – but surprisingly enough, it manages to improve in almost every aspect when comparing it to the Pantech Slate. Exuding a design that looks eerily most similar to the Nokia E71, the Link is extremely sleek (0.39” thick) and radiates a high level of quality in its design. Clearly it's constructed out of plastic, but the unique metallic paint job used on the bezel and patterned rubberized back cover adds to its overall appeal. Thanks to the choice of materials, the Pantech Link is extremely light weight (3.21 oz) and doesn't feel noticeable in the pockets. Pantech's evolution is evident as we've seen them progress greatly from the cheap feeling Pantech Slate to the current Link which shines brightly with a construction and design that rivals closely to some smartphones.
You can compare the Pantech Link with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.
Continuing in its overhaul, the Pantech Link's 2.4” QVGA LCD display with support for 262k colors does well in most conditions – but we found that it had some poor viewing angles. Despite that, the bump in resolution does help in meticulously reading out text while colors still looked a bit on the dull side. Navigating wasn't a chore thanks to the tactile circular directional pad that was supplemented by the usual set of large sized dedicated buttons. The left edge of the phone houses the microSD slot and decently sized volume rocker while the right side accommodates the proprietary charging port and dedicated camera button. Finally, you can find the 1.3-megapixel camera with self-portrait mirror and speaker phone on the back while removing the rear cover gives you access to the battery and SIM card slot.
Just taking a quick glance at the Pantech Link's QWERTY keyboard instantly reminded us of the one found on the Nokia E71 – it has a strikingly similar look with its tiny keys that don't offer any spacing in between them. However, they are slightly raised towards the middle which provides a rather distinct feel between each key. Additionally, the weak back-lighting made it even more difficult to make out keys in the dark – it's something that should pose no problem on any device. Nonetheless, we liked the solid feel when pressing down a button which made typing a decent experience despite its cramped nature.